Isle Of Wight Tourist Guide

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Isle of Wight Events 2012

Below is a list of the main Isle of Wight events for 2012. Whatever your interests, there is always plenty of things to do for all ages, including music festivals, carnivals, sailing regattas and beer festivals. The Isle of Wight is not just a holiday destination for the spring and summer, try a visit in the autumn and winter too - you will not be disappointed. Every year, the events on the Island get better and better and bigger and bigger, so read on to find out what fantastic Isle of Wight events are scheduled for 2012.

Mar | Apr | May | Jun | Jul | Aug | Sep | Oct | Nov | Dec

MARCH 2012

Sun 25 March
Isle of Wight Grand National and Ashey Scurry

Grand National & Ashey Scurry

The Isle of Wight Grand National and Ashey Scurry is a series of amateur horse races over cross country, post and rail and natural hedges. The event takes place at West Ashey Farm, near Ryde. The course can be reached by car or by steam train from Havenstreet Station. A great family day out . Visit for details.

APRIL 2012

Sun 1 April
Memorial Ploughing Match

The Memorial Ploughing Match 2012 is in aid of the Earl Mountbatten Hospice and will be held at New Wolverton Farm in Shorwell. The event includes heavy horses ploughing, plus vintage and conventional ploughing. Free entry. Website

MAY 2012

Fri 11 - Sun 13 May

Ribex 2010

Now in its 12th year, the Suzuki sponsored powerboat & RIB show will once again be returning to Cowes Yacht Haven. The show traditionally features over 80 boats afloat in the event marina ready for public sea trial, plus a whole tented village of special exhibits, food outlets and interactive displays. Website:

Sat 5 - Sun 20 May
Isle of Wight Walking Festival

Walking Festival

The Isle of Wight Walking Festival has been held on the Island every May since 1999 and is the largest walking festival in the UK. It is an extremely popular event and attracts huge numbers from all over the world. The festival offers numerous guided walks that cater for all ages and abilities. Included in the festival is "Walk the Wight", a long distance sponsored walk, with proceeds going to the Earl Mountbatten Hospice. For full details of all walks, visit

Sun 13 May
Walk The Wight

Walk the Wight

Part of the Isle of Wight Walking Festival is Walk The Wight - a sponsored walk to raise money for the Earl Mountbatten Hospice, which cares for terminally ill patients on the Island. This wonderful annual event gives participants of all ages a unique opportunity to walk across some of the Island’s most stunning countryside. The most famous part of Walk The Wight is the main route, which goes from Bembridge on the eastern corner of the Island, to Alum Bay on the western point. In addition to taking walkers through some of the most scenic footpaths on the Isle of Wight such as the Tennyson Trail, the walk also goes across private land, which is not open to walkers at any other time. To really enjoy Walk The Wight, you need to be fit enough to comfortably manage your chosen route, particularly if you have decided to tackle all or even half of the main walk, as it includes many hills. Even regular walkers might want to do a bit of training beforehand, as 13 or 26 miles is a long way over such varied terrain. For more information, visit

Fri 25 - Sun 27 May
Yarmouth Old Gaffers Festival

Yarmouth Old Gaffers Festival

Three days of free entertainment, craft stalls, live music and much more. The Old Gaffers, so called because of the traditional gaff rig, travel from all over the country to participate in these wonderful festivities held in the ancient town of Yarmouth. The Old Gaffers is one of the most popular events on the Isle of Wight. Website:

Gatcombe and Chillerton Scarecrow Festival

Gatcombe & Chillerton Scarecrow Festival

2012 sees the third Gatcombe and Chillerton Scarecrow Festival and there is hopefully going to be over 100 scarecrows on show in people's gardens and on Chillerton green etc. For full details visit:

JUNE 2012

Fri 22 - Sun 24 June
Isle of Wight Festival

Isle of Wight Festival

Major UK music festival held over three days at Seaclose Park in Newport. The Isle of Wight Festival is one of the most well known Isle of Wight events and the 2012 line-up features the usual abundance of top acts, including Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band, Tinie Tempah, Jessie J, Madness, Elbow, Magnetic Man, Biffy Clyro, Madness, Pearl Jam, Miles Kane, Feeder, Noah & The Whale, Example, Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds, Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, Joan Armatrading, The Vaccines and many more including the cream of local talent. For full line-up and ticket info visit:

Sat 30 June
Round The Island Race

Round the Island Race

JPMorgan Asset Management Round The Island Race is the largest and most famous yachting race in the UK. The race starts and finishes at Cowes and covers a 50 mile course around the Isle of Wight. Some of the biggest names in the sailing world compete with weekend sailors and family crews in this annual yachting extravaganza. Website:

JULY 2012

Sat 21 July
Newport Main Carnival
Join the celebrations through Newport

Fri 27 July
Sandown Children's Carnival

Sat 28 July
Sandown Main Carnival
Join the celebrations through Sandown

Mon 30 July - Fri 3 August
Cowes Dingy Week

Held at Gurnard Green, Cowes Dinghy Week is a five-day family sailing event hosted by Gurnard Sailing Club.


Wed 1 August
Shanklin Main Carnival

Join in the carnival celebrations throughout Shanklin.

Sat 4 August
Shanklin Illuminated Carnival

Sat 4 - Sun 5 August
Chale Show

Fun for all the family with free parking. Events and entertainment over the two days includes horticultural marquees, stalls, entertainments, craft, antique, indoor market, side shows and food & drink outlets with a licensed area. For further information visit:

Wed 8 August
Cowes Main Carnival

Sat 11 - Sat 18 August
Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week

Cowes Week

Cowes Week is probably the most well known of all Isle of Wight events, with around 1000 boats and 8500 competitors taking part in this world famous sailing regatta. With its exciting racing schedule and superb shore side activities, Cowes Week offers something for everyone. Cowes Week Website

Rolex Fastnet Race

One of Royal Ocean Racing Club´s greatest sailing events. Commencing from Cowes, the race ends at Plymouth and goes via the Fastnet Rock off South West Island.

Wed 15 August
Ventnor Main Carnival

Sat 18 August
Ventnor Illuminated Carnival

Sat 18 - Sun 19 August
Isle of Wight Garlic Festival

Garlic Festival

The Garlic Festival is held at Newchurch Showground, next to the Fighting Cocks pub at Arreton on the Newport to Sandown road. As well as the world famous Isle of Wight garlic, the very best of Island produce is also showcased, with over 300 stalls selling food and a diverse range of arts and crafts, plus live music. Website:

Ventnor Cricket Club v Lashings World XI

An action-packed and entertaining afternoon at Newclose County Cricket Ground is expected when Ventnor Cricket Club again take on the might of the cricketing superstars of the Lashings World XI - the world’s most famous club cricket team. Start of play is at 2.30pm.

Fri 24 August
Pan Estate Carnival (Newport)

Fri 24 - Sun 26 August
The British Powerboat Festival

British Powerboat Festival 2011 at Cowes

The three-day British Powerboat Festival, powered by RB12, is the largest gathering of endurance powerboats anywhere in the world. and incorporates the Cowes-Torquay-Cowes race, RYA National Marathon Championship, UIM Marathon World Cup, Cowes-Poole-Cowes race, RYA National P1 Superstock Championship, Club (Basic) Race for RIBs, OCR & Sports Boats. Expect drama, spectacular high speed action and glamour, all with an international flavour. There are bars, food, music and entertainment for all the family. Visit for full details.

Fri 24 - Mon 27 August
Isle of Wight Scooter Rally

Held at Smallbrook Stadium in Ryde, this is widely recognised as the biggest scooter event in the world. A fun-packed weekend for the scooter enthusiast culminating with a round the Island ride-out, this is an event that just has to be attended by every self-respecting scooterist. For more information visit:

Sat 25 August
Cowes Illuminated Carnival

Summer Madness 2012

Fantastic outdoor music event held in the surroundings of Carisbrooke Castle. Now in its third year, Summer Madness is already earning a reputation for its diverse line-up and chilled-out vibe. For full details including ticket information visit:

Wed 29 August
Sandown Illuminated Carnival


Sat 1 September
St Helens Carnival

Thu 6 - Sun 9 September

Bestival 2010

Sunday Best´s Bestival is held at Robin Hill Country Park on the outskirts of Newport and is regularly voted the "Best Medium Sized Festival" at the UK Music Festival Awards. There will be an abundance of top acts appearing this year including Stevie Wonder, New Order The xx, Sigur Rós, Friendly Fires, Soulwax, Justice, plus the cream of local Island talent. Website:

Thu 6 - Sun 9 September
Little Britain Challenge Cup

The Little Britain Challenge Cup is the largest corporate yachting regatta in Europe, as well as the biggest UK gathering of senior figureheads from the construction and property industry. The regatta is held at Cowes and is one of the industry´s top social sporting events of the year. Website:

Isle of Wight International Charity Classic Car Show

This fantastic two-day event is now in its eleventh year and promises to be the biggest and best yet. Hundreds of British and foreign vintage, classic, custom, retro and “oddball” cars and motorcycles are expected to attend from all over the UK. All proceeds will go to the Earl Mountbatten Hospice.

Sat 22 - Sun 30 September
Isle of Wight Cycling Festival

Cycling Festival

Every year the Island hosts the Isle of Wight Cycling Festival, which features several different cycling events for all abilities and disciplines. Races include an on-road 70 mile round the Island race known as Cycle the Wight and Sink or Swim, where home made pedal powered craft attempt to cross the River Medina! For the more resilient cyclist, the three, seven and 14 hills challenges known as "The Hills Killer" are a real test of stamina. For full details, visit:

Annual Sweetcorn Fayre

Held at Arreton Old Village, the Annual Sweetcorn Fayre is a celebration of local food and drink and includes specially themed food at the Dairyman´s Daughter pub at Arreton Barns. The great line-up of attractions makes it a weekend not to be missed.


Isle of Wight Marathon

Held since 1957, the Isle of Wight Marathon starts and finishes at Ryde. Medals awarded to all finishers.

Fri 26 - Mon 29 October
Autumn Walking Weekend
A great programme is available with over 60 walks to choose from. Come and enjoy the Island's breathtaking autumnal scenery and join in one of the guided walks, all led by knowledgeable and friendly walk leaders. Website:


Sandown Lantern Parade


Victorian Christmas at Osborne House

Victorian Xmas at Osborne House

Step back in time and experience a traditional Victorian Christmas at Osborne House in East Cowes where you will see Queen Victoria´s holiday home dressed for the festive season. Delight at the Dickensian characters and enjoy carol singing and traditional entertainment. Booking is essential for groups. For prices and tickets call 0870 333 1183.


Ventnor Lantern Parade

Cowes Christmas Carnival

Visit: for full details.

The Lake - Isle of Wight Guest Accommodation in Bonchurch, near Ventnor Yelfs Hotel Restaurant & Bar - Quality Accommodation in Ryde Value Rent A Car in Sandown - Car Hire on the Isle of Wight The Lawns - Isle of Wight B&B Guest House in Sandown Red Funnel Ferries to the Isle of Wight Maher Ross Holiday Lettings - Isle of Wight Self Catering Accommodation Sorrento Lodge Bed & Breakfast in Ryde - Luxury Isle of Wight B&B with Sea Views Boathouse Holiday Apartments - Isle of Wight Self Catering in Yarmouth Waterfront Inn - Isle of Wight Bar & Guest House on Shanklin Seafront Isle of Wight Bed & Breakfast and Self Catering Farm and Country Holidays The Royal Hotel in Ventnor - The Premier 4 Star Hotel on the Isle of Wight Farringford Holiday Cottages - Isle of Wight Self Catering Accommodation, Freshwater Bay Lawns Court - Isle of Wight Luxury Self Catering Apartments in Sandown Hovertravel - 10 Minutes to the Isle of Wight from Southsea by Hovercraft Whitecliff Bay Holiday Park - Isle of Wight Accommodation, Camping & Touring in Bembridge Lakeside Park Hotel - The Only Purpose Built 4 Star Hotel on the Isle of Wight Superb Live Music, Food & Drink at The Dairyman´s Daughter at Arreton Village Island Cottage Holidays - Isle of Wight Holiday Cottages